Companies should prioritise training to tackle the skills shortage

Technological advancements have greatly benefited the economy but as progression continues, many sectors are finding themselves at the mercy of a skills shortage. This is due to the fact that only a small percentage of the labour pool has the necessary qualifications and experience to match business needs. In fact, new research released by the UK Government highlights that economic growth during the previous four years has been met by a noticeable shortage of talent. So much so that, since 2012, skills shortages have risen by 130 per cent.

With this in mind, our latest report, The GCS Salary Guide 2016, revealed that the majority of employees are dissatisfied with the training they receive – despite the fact that training could potentially address the issue of talent poverty. The report found that 60 per cent of staff across the nation are unhappy with the training offered by their employer. It also found that only 19 per cent received an increase in training last year, a statistic which conflicts with the calls from businesses for more qualified labour.

With this in mind it’s important that companies keep people up-skilled. Current employees could have hidden skill-sets or be eager to progress in a different direction. Improving career training would be beneficial for both employee and employer, but this will not happen if the vast majority of companies continue to provide unsatisfactory education.

In the current economic climate, poor training damages companies in two ways. Firstly, it is another missed engagement opportunity. Take a prospective employee for example; if a company is not able to provide beneficial and extensive training, they may feel that they will be better off elsewhere. This is especially true if a competitor is offering comprehensive training aligned with an outlined career path and promotion structure. Secondly, it could have a negative impact on staff retention. If employees are not given the correct training to progress their careers, they will not hesitate to go elsewhere. In fact 45 per cent of employees are considering changing permanent jobs in the next six months.   

Ultimately, companies looking outwards are falling victim to an unprecedented skills shortage. However, our research has revealed 64 per cent of employees surveyed believe that they cannot achieve their career ambitions with their current client or employer. With this in mind, companies should look to beat the skills shortage by improving training processes to retain their star workers and attract new talent. 

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